Milecastle 39 & Sycamore Gap

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More photos from Hadrian’s Wall in winter. Milecastle 39 and Sycamore Gap are visited by large numbers of people but on this particular day there was only a handful of us out walking. Hadrian’s Wall has an abundance of incredible locations that are well worth visiting. The landscape it occupies never fails to take my breath away.

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© Simon Howlett 2018. All rights reserved

LS Lowry

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Visited a number of LS Lowry locations recently. Some are very close to home as Lowry frequently visited the Lakes with his good friend Sheila Fell, a local artist. These two photos are from the Manchester area. He made several paintings and drawings of St Augustine’s Church, Pendlebury. One of the paintings can be seen here: St Augustine’s Church

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In 1942 Lowry was appointed a war artist. He produced a painting of Mather and Platt Park Works, part of which was laid out as a gun factory during the Second World War. A fascinating place to explore, a security guard kept a close eye on me while I was having a look round. Fortunately I wasn’t asked to move on. The painting can be seen here: Going to Work

Information regarding Lowry locations in the Manchester area can be found in the excellent book ‘Lowry’s City’ (Judith Sandling and Mike Leber – Lowry Press). One of my favourite books, a used copy costs only a few pounds. More information can be found here: Lowry’s City

© Simon Howlett 2018. All rights reserved

Panoramic Carlisle

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Panoramic photos from Carlisle made with a Fujifilm GX617 medium format film camera and Ilford Delta 100/Ilford FP4 roll film. This new project will be shot entirely in panoramic format, hopefully followed with an exhibition in Carlisle at some point.

Superb examples of panoramic photography can be found in Josef Sudek’s book Praha Panoramatická. First published in 1959 it has page after page of incredibly beautiful images of Prague. It is one of my favourite photo books. A short video (from Christies) regarding Josef Sudek and his work can be found here: Josef Sudek

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© Simon Howlett 2017. All rights reserved

Birthplace of a Mutineer

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Moorland Close Farm, the birthplace of Fletcher Christian and St. Bridgets church where he was christened.

A bootprint, initialed FC, in the lead flashing of the summer house pictured above, is reputed to be that of Fletcher Christian. Mel Gibson visited the farm in the 1980s when making ‘The Bounty’. I believe he clambered up on to the summer house to take a look at the bootprint.

The white foal in the first photo kept a curious eye on me at all times. A pleasure to see … it made my day.

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© Simon Howlett 2017. All rights reserved

Fletcher Christian – Ewanrigg Hall

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The family of HMS Bounty mutineer, Fletcher Christian, owned Ewanrigg Hall in Maryport. A grade II listed building, it has been derelict for many years. Two storeys from the centre of the original building no longer remain. In the last photo an entrance to a tunnel can be seen on the side of the main building at ground level, which provided access from the hall down to Maryport.

I’m also planning to photograph Moorland Close Farm where Fletcher Christian was born. These locations are close to home, but despite having had a lifelong fascination with the Bounty story, I’ve only recently started to visit them.

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© Simon Howlett 2017. All rights reserved

Allonby, Aigle Ghyll & Criffel

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Following in the footsteps of local artists Sheila Fell RA (1931-1979) and Percy Kelly (1918-1993). Above is Allonby, the subject of a number of paintings by both artists. Percy Kelly lived in Allonby from 1958 to 1970.

Below is a scene looking towards Aigle Ghyll farm and Criffel. Sheila Fell made paintings of the farm which is close to Aspatria where she was born.

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© Simon Howlett 2017. All rights reserved

Beatles & Quarrymen Live

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All photos shot with a 1960s Hasselblad 500C. More of this series can be seen on my website at: Beatles Live

The Quarrymen played at the Casbah Coffee Club on several occasions in 1959 and the Beatles played numerous gigs here from 1960 – 1962. The club is in the basement of this house in Hayman’s Green, Liverpool. I recently did a tour of the club which was conducted by Roag Best, brother of Pete Best, the Beatles original drummer. It was a great insight into the Beatles early days, I’ll definately be paying a return visit.

John, Paul and George painted the ceilings in this club and their work can still be seen. John painted the ‘Aztec’ ceiling, Paul painted the ‘Rainbow’ ceiling and all three painted the ‘Star’ ceiling. There’s a hole in one made by Rory Storm when he got a little too energetic during a performance. He ended up head butting the ceiling and left his skull imprint as a lasting reminder!

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The Quarrymen played one gig at the Stanley Abattoir Social Club, Liverpool in 1957. The abottoir pictured above is now a market.

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The final photo is the Locarno Ballroom, Liverpool. The Beatles played here on Valentine’s Day 1963. Next door in the distance is the Grafton Rooms, another Beatles’ venue.

© Simon Howlett 2016. All rights reserved

Beatles Live

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A new project photographing venues the Beatles performed in. Shot with a 1960s Hasselblad 500C, Distagon f4/50 and Kodak T-MAX 100.

The first image is the Grosvenor Ballroom, Wallasey. The Beatles played here on many occasions in 1960 and 1961. The venue had a reputation for rival Teddy boys fighting during gigs. I believe a piano, which is still at the ballroom, was used by the band.

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Above is Gambier Terrace, Liverpool. The Beatles rehearsed here in John Lennon’s flat. The terrace is directly opposite Liverpool Cathedral where Paul McCartney failed an audition to get into the choir when he was 11. In more recent times his classical work has been played at the cathedral. John Lennon’s song Imagine was played on the cathedral bells in 2009 as part of the city’s arts festival.

Below is Barnston Women’s Institute, Heswall. The Beatles played the Institute 3 times and wore their stage suits here for the first time in 1962.

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© Simon Howlett 2016. All rights reserved

Britannia Bridge – Menai Strait

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I’d walked past this spot earlier when heading out to the Menai Suspension Bridge but didn’t spot the potential the scene had. When walking back to Britannia Bridge I came upon this reflection which soon stopped me in my tracks. I was also drawn to the trees framing the scene.

Occasionally a light breeze blew across the water so I had to be patient. At one point two ducks landed right in the middle of the pool of water and the reflection was gone … a little more patience was required!

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© Simon Howlett 2016. All rights reserved

High Level Bridge Reflection

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High Level Bridge reflected in a section of the arch ‘Rise and Fall’ by Lulu Quinn (2007). This is one of many commissioned works of art at Gateshead Quayside.

Shot with a 1968 Hasselblad 500C camera loaded with Kodak T-MAX 100 film. I’ve been getting to grips with this camera in preparation for photographing Paris later this year.

Also planning to use the Hasselblad to photograph music venues the Beatles performed in, with a view to producing platinum/palladium prints from the results. The venues’ history and the link they have with the Beatles is something I enjoy researching.

© Simon Howlett 2016. All rights reserved